Disclaimer: The only way I would ever own the Magnificent Seven is if I win a rather sizable lottery. I haven’t yet, but one of these days a string of sevens WILL win. I need only to wait. The elves, (when not elves) are not mine either as they belong to whoever owns the Ronin Warriors.
Archive: If you want it go ahead, but tell me where please.
Pairing/ Main Characters: Ezra
AU: (pre-) ATF
Notes: This is an answer to the May Community Zero Challenge : Do you believe in the supernatural, the unusual, the out of the ordinary things that can not be explained? What would the boys do when faced with such a situation? Write a story where one or more of the boys are caught up with forces beyond their control. My one stipulation is that there most be some otherwordly figure, (ghost, alien, angel, etc...) there to help them along. Note: This should not be a horror story! Good Luck, Michelle
This story is dedicated to En.
On his last night in Atlanta, Ezra Standish Dreamed.
He had first Dreamed when he was seven and Maude had left him for the third time.
He had been in a huge, dark forest. The trees cast deep shadows on the ground, so deep that Ezra thought it was night until the leaves had shifted and a thin shaft of sunlight had pierced the gloom.
The sunlight had showed him a raven. Curious, Ezra approached it and it hopped a few feet away, looking back as if to say ‘Well, aren’t you coming?’
And Ezra had followed it. And he started going faster, and faster, and faster. Until he was running through a dim tunnel, and there were fantastic creatures and fabulous places appearing and disappearing at the edges of his vision. And still the raven danced before, and the bushes and trees and roots seemed to move out of the way, or become insubstantial.
And Ezra found himself standing in a grassy clearing with dew on the grass and the morning sun gently bathing the trees a warm honey color. There was a figure in green sitting cross-legged under a tree playing a wooden flute. Ezra couldn’t tell if the figure was male or female. The figure might have been female since the fingers were long and elegant and the long golden hair that obviously reached past the figure’s knees was pulled back into a braid starting at about the middle of the back, letting a thick lock of hair drop over the right eye. Then the ethereal music had broken off and surprise was clear in the visible violet eye.
The seven-year old quickly found that the figure was male, a very beautiful one. But he didn’t care about that, because he had found a friend. One that taught him about the Dreaming, and warned him that while what and who he saw while Dreaming was real; Ezra too was real, but belonged to a different place.
“...For everyone, dreaming is an escape from what they know as Reality. So is Dreaming. Dreaming shows What Is, and sometimes What May Be. It is a haven, a place to rest and leave behind your troubles. But there are also dangers in Dreaming, because you are Dreaming of what is Real. Those cares and troubles you seek to lay aside will not vanish quietly, and will continue to find you until you deal with them. Some are easier to deal with while Dreaming, but not all. And those are sometimes the worse for having been put off. Dreaming is not the answer to every problem. Do not seek to use it as such. But do not worry so much of the future, Little One. I am here, and I will ever stand your friend....”
And Ezra found himself standing in a grassy clearing with dew on the grass and the morning sun gently bathing the trees a warm honey color. And still there was a figure in green sitting cross-legged under a tree playing a wooden flute.
“Sit down Little One.” The figure set down his flute gracefully and motioned to the empty space beside him. “You have been too long away.”
“For myself as well, my friend.” Ezra took the space offered, but backwards so that he could lie down in the fragrant grass. He regarded his timeless, wise friend carefully. “Yet you have not changed Sage. That comforts me for some odd reason.”
“You have changed Little One. You always do.” Sage tilted his head in mild appraisal. “On one hand you are more self-contained and have great inner strength, yet that strength is sapped and you are careworn and downtrodden.” He absently brushed the errant lock of hair behind his elegantly pointed ear, the concern in his eyes clear even when the lock fell back moments later.
Ezra smiled tiredly at the elf, not arguing, but not explaining either. “Why do you call me that? Little One, I mean. I’m almost twice as tall as you are now.”
“It is not that you are taller than I; you are younger, Ezra. You carry the blood of elves in your veins. You must or you would not be able to Dream.” The elf sighed. “But you know this already, since I have told you before. Tell me, what is it that troubles you?”
Ezra was silent for long moments. “I’m being transferred again. It’s been made clear that this is my last chance... If I screw up this time...”
“Have you met your... supervisor yet?” The elf was somewhat hesitant approaching the halfway foreign concept.
“Yes, Larabee. He struck me as a tough but fair man.”
“Then you have nothing to lose by doing your best. A man like that waits to form his own judgment about people, not trust in rumors.”
“I suppose you’re right, Sage”
“Of course I am.” The prim, snobbish look and tone started Ezra laughing. The elf smiled warmly at him. “Besides, Little One, if it does not work out for you, there are other things for you to do.”
“I’ll think about it later.”
“As you wish, Little One.” The elf took up his flute again, and Ezra let himself drift with the music.
Ezra taped the last of his boxes and sat back. “Denver... What’s in Denver?” Oh well, he’d do his best, and when he got fired he’d just become a teacher or something.
A blue-haired elf dropped out of the tree and stole his friend’s flute. “Well Sage?”
“I think Ezra will like it there, Rowen. After all, it is the time for the Seven to become reacquainted.”